Steel Mills

USW, NDP Continue to Seek Release of Secret Deal

Written by Sandy Williams

United Steelworkers are continuing to fight for the release of the secret deal between the Canadian government and US Steel.

NDP MP Scott Duvall, on Thursday, called on the House of Commons on Thursday to release the terms of the agreement.

United Steelworkers’ Ontario/Atlantic Director Marty Warren said Duvall’s demand must be acted on if the federal government has any intention at all of saving Canada’s steel industry.

“Mr. Duvall has repeated our sustained call for a release of details on the secret deal signed by the previous government with U.S. Steel in 2011,” said Warren. “Workers and retirees are on the front line and have the most to lose if this vital piece of the puzzle is missing. Our union is involved as much as any other stakeholder. Our status must be respected if there are discussions around potential buyers.”

The 2011 deal ended a federal government lawsuit over U.S. Steel’s failure to fulfill the terms of the original secret deal that allowed the takeover of the former Stelco in 2007. The USW and City of Hamilton have filed multiple motions to secure release of the agreement, contending it is relevant to the restructuring process and should be shared with all stakeholders.

Tony DePaulo, assistant to Warren, said releasing the document would be a simple step the government could take to end the court wrangling and allow fruitful dialogue.

“Release the details of the 2011 deal,” said DePaulo. “Create a level playing field. Do what this government promised in last fall’s election. Allow transparency and remove the cloak of secrecy.”

US Steel Canada’s Board of Directors, along with management and CCAA advisors, are currently evaluating multiple bids submitted for purchase of the Canadian mills.

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